Toronto Argonauts: James Wilder Jr goes wild again in win over Alouettes

A helmet of the Toronto Argonauts. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)
A helmet of the Toronto Argonauts. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images) /

James Wilder Jr has another great night as he contributes to the Toronto Argonauts first back to back win of the season at BMO Field.

If you thought that James Wilder Jr couldn’t come close to repeating his big performance from last week, think again.

The Toronto Argonauts running back combined for more than 200 yards as he helps his team regain the Eastern division lead with a 33-19 win over the struggling Montreal Alouettes at BMO Field in front of 12,862.

The 25-year old finished the night with a total of 218 yards (141 rushing yards on 10 carries and 77 yards receiving on six catches) while making some Argonauts history in the process.

He now holds the record for the most rushing yards in back-to-back games at 331, beating out Cory Boyd’s 2010 record of 290 rushing yards. However, in terms of the CFL record? That belongs to Mike Pringle, who has 425 rushing yards over two games in 1994. (One note to make however is that the record can only be traced back in the past 35 years)

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When informed by the media that he set a new record after the game, Wilder Jr was appreciative, but he was not ready to put the focus solely on him.

“That’s a great honour,” said Wilder Jr. “The win was better, I’m more of a team stats guy instead of an individual guy. It’s an honour to have an attribute like that, it feels great.”

Of course, one of the biggest plays that helped the running back pile on the yardage was another big run who topped his previous run the week before. Turns out, it was the longest run by an Argonaut in 41 years when quarterback Chuck Ealey ran for 86 yards in 1976.

(To clarify, the run was an 85-yard touchdown, something I should have picked up on right away.)

When asked about the performance of the offensive lineman, Wilder Jr once again gave credit to their work on the field.

“I don’t feel right even taking these interviews without them or giving them credit,” said Wilder Jr. “You see the holes that they make for me. I feel like anyone of you guys [the reporters in the scrum] could have had the same amount of stats rushing.”

Argonauts head coach Marc Trestman emphasized after the game that despite Brandon Whitaker being the starting running back at the start of the season, he wanted to see what Wilder Jr can bring to the team.

“We started the season with Brandon, somebody we could rely on, protection wise, and be a solid football player,” said the Argonauts head coach. “Then we just did an evaluation. It wasn’t that Brandon wasn’t playing well, we felt like we wanted to change the chemistry.”

“We knew James had it in him. We’re trying to find out football team. We started with Brandon, we felt like we weren’t getting enough out of it. We wanted to see what James could bring to the table, that’s all.”

Next: Argonauts: Still room for improvement

The Argonauts will be looking for their third straight win of the season as they head on over to Hamilton to take on the resurging Ti-Cats on September 30th at Tim Horton’s Field.